Ehrlich Residence

Santa Monica, USA

John Friedman Alice Kimm Architects
www. jfak. net

186 Ehrlich Residence | Santa Monica | USA | Fig. 1 above | Fig. 2 opposite

The solid, service elements of the Ehrlich Residence create a vertical internal massing which rises with the stairwell from 1st to 2nd floor. The creation of this atrium is a key element of the multiple “passive” strategies of sustainable design. Warm air is gathered and vented via the atrium through motorised roof slights. Negative pressure created by ocean breezes passing over the roof adds to the “stack effect”, drawing warm air from the house (Fig. 7).

A further example of the “passive strategy” is the concrete floor being designed to act as a heat sink, absorbing and storing heat during the day and emitting it at night. Additionally, careful solar studies resulted in the south facing eaves being strategically placed to allow winter sunlight to penetrate. The higher rotation of the summer sun is blocked out. Western facades are generally solid to mitigate solar gain in the hot summer afternoons.

The property’s green credentials are further increased by the active systems incorporated into the fit-out element of the property. These include the recycling of greywater from sinks, bathtubs, showers and the washing machine. The water is re-used to irrigate parts of the garden.

Radiant floor heating water is raised to temperature using a high efficiency gas powered boiler unit.

A 4 kW rooftop photovoltaic system supplements the energy requirements of the property.

Comparison studies of the Ehrlich Residence report that the new property can be maintained 10 degrees cooler in summer, and 7 degrees warmer in winter, than the previous property sited on the plot. The new property uses 55% less energy per square foot than the comparison property built in 1953.

The materials used in the construction of the Ehrlich Residence were selected carefully as follows.

Externally (Figs. 1,3,6, and 8).

Cement Board exterior siding.

Smooth trowelled plaster cladding.

Concrete flooring to first level.

Insulation from recycled cotton denim.

Hardwood used sparingly from sustainable sources.

Internally (Figs. 4,5,6,9,10 and 11).

Hardwood used sparingly from sustainable sources. Formaldehyde free MDF cabinets.

Low Voc paints.

Man made countertops, Quartz Ceaser stone.

medium density fiber board



12 terrace



13 stair/atrium



16 master bedroom